Arbico delivers yet another superb performer in the budget-priced PC category. With a WorldBench processing-speed score of 116, the CD8400 XL not only beats Arbico’s previous chart-topper, the CD6570 SX, by a full 17 points, but even outscores two of the machines in our latest Power PCs chart.

The Arbico CD8400 XL's impressive performance is mainly down to the 3GHz Intel Core Duo E8400 used in both this system and the CyberPower Gamer Infinity 750.

Like previous low-cost systems from Arbico, the CD8400 XL is shipped with the 19in Hannspree XM New York display. This widescreen model has built-in speakers and intriguing looks that set it apart from the low-grade plastic-finished designs we’re used to seeing at this price point. It’s great to see a display with full height, tilt and swivel adjustments at this price level. It also provides pretty good image quality.

The Arbico CD8400 XL’s Coolermaster Elite 330 chassis is solidly built yet stylish. Some budget cases can feel flimsy and fragile, but this PC looks nothing like a bargain-basement system. In fact, Arbico uses the same case for its power PCs.

There’s a total of six free 3.5in bays and three free 5.25in bays, so you’re unlikely to run out of expansion room in the Arbico CD8400 XL. It’s also good to see the use of two sticks of branded Corsair XMS2 DDR2 memory and a Coolermaster 460W power supply.

The Arbico CD8400 XL's GeForce 8600GT graphics card provides a good level of gaming performance, although hardcore gamers should take a look at the Eclipse Matrix A64N88GS. This manages considerably more frames per second at the expense of overall system speed.

Budget PCs chart ranking (May issue)

  1. Arbico CD8400 XL
  2. CyberPower Gamer Infinity 750
  3. Eclipse Matrix A64N88GS
  4. Zoostorm 4-2354
  5. Arbico CD6570 SX